Health Information Management

The week in Medicare updates

APCs Insider, November 21, 2014

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CMS posts guidelines for clinical laboratories concerning possible Ebola virus 
On November 7, CMS posted information from the CDC with interim guidance for specimen collection, transport, testing, and submission for persons under investigation for Ebola virus disease in the United States. Before collecting any specimens, one should coordinate with the state public health laboratory/CDC. It contains information regarding personal protective equipment to be used by healthcare workers. Laboratory employees and other workers handling specimens for Ebola testing are strongly urged to review and fully adopt and implement this guidance. FDA test system information for hospitals and laboratories is provided, which includes test manufacturer, methodology, quality control, and test validation. Surveyors are to assess compliance for only CLIA. All regulations remain in effect.
 View the survey and certification letter.
Request for nominations for members for the MEDCAC committee  
On November 10, CMS posted a notice in the Federal Register announcing the request for nominations for membership on the Medicare Evidence Development & Coverage Advisory (MEDCAC). Among other duties, the MEDCAC provides advice and guidance to the Secretary of the Department of HHS and the Administrator of CMS concerning the adequacy of scientific evidence available to CMS in making Medicare coverage determinations. The MEDCAC reviews and evaluates medical literature and technology assessments, and hears public testimony on the evidence available to address the impact of medical items and services on health outcomes of Medicare beneficiaries. Nominations are due December 8. 
View the notice in theFederal Register.
CMS posts proposed decision memorandum for screening for lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography
On November 10, CMS posted a proposed decision memorandum stating the evidence is sufficient to add a lung cancer screening counseling and shared decision making visit, and for appropriate beneficiaries, screening for lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT), once per year as an additional preventive service benefit. The patient must meet certain criteria, including age, symptomatology, and other factors. 
View the proposed decision memorandum.
CMS revises application-reassignment of Medicare benefits form  
On November 14, CMS released a Special Edition MLN Matters article. This article states all providers and suppliers must use the revised CMS 855R (Reassignment of Benefits) application beginning June 1, 2015. 
View Special Edition MLN Matters article SE1432.
CMS posts quarterly listing of program issuances 
On November 14, CMS posted a quarterly notice in the Federal Register listing CMS manual instructions, substantive and interpretive regulations, and other Federal Register notices published from July through September 2014, relating to the Medicare and Medicaid programs and other programs administered by CMS. 
View the notice in the Federal Register.

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